Mark your calendars
In my mind, there is no better holiday gift, whether giving or receiving, than something locally made. Not only does it give everyone a great taste of the flavors of our region, but helps support the plethora of local food artisans who help make Petaluma what it is. This weekend boasts three holiday craft and food fairs that will make your last-minute holiday shopping a breeze.
Live Oak Charter School’s Craft Faire is Friday, Dec. 14, from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at their Petaluma Fairgrounds’ location. Just enter the front gate and follow the signs to plenty of great gift ideas from LaLa’s Jam Bar, Sonoma Spice Queen, Swayne Family Ranch’s olive oils, Healthy High’s superfood elixirs (teas and coffees), honey from Christine Kurtz, homemade granola from Roadside Stand, Gerald’s handcrafted and flavored chocolate-topped marshmallows and pizelle bars, Byerton’s roasted almonds (both sweet and savory), Joy’s hand-crafted fudges and toffees and Marie’s Baked Goods. Wreaths, bulbs and winter greens, air plants and wooden carriers will be available from Second Street Flowers, Lauren’s Landscape, Cahtrina Susoev and Michelle Loftin. Baytihome will have Moroccan home décor items. There will also be plenty of other gift ideas from jewelry to artwork to soaps to candles to kids toys, books music and clothing. This event benefits Petaluma Educational Foundation and Live Oak Charter School.
The Bank — Community Hub and Marketplace has taken over the former Seed Bank building at the corner of Petaluma Boulevard and Washington, with plans to transform the space into a market hall. They will introduce themselves to the community with their Holiday Pop-up Market this Friday through Sunday, Dec. 14 to 16, from noon to 7 p.m. with local artists, makers and live music. So far, they have 13 vendors lined up, including foodies such as Mariposa Creamery, Miyoko’s Creamery, Stella’s Table, True Delicious and Delicias Oaxaqueñas de Leo. The Cinnigals (Cinnibar ladies choir) and the Petaluma High School Jazz Band will provide live entertainment.
Bert’s Desserts will spearhead the 10th annual Holiday Wholesale Sale from its commercial kitchen space at 501 Lakeville St., on Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 15 and 16, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Bert’s will be joined by Golden State Pickle Works, which was a big winners at this year’s Harvest Fair; Red Bird Bakery, Awesome Bars, Petaluma Creamery, What a Chicken and Vicki Martinelli, who is an author, jeweler and rock painter. Bert has rolled out a bunch of great desserts for the season, including her chocolate-covered Oreo cookies, but it’s her newest creation, chocolate-covered Nutter Butters, in dark and milk chocolate, that will have me stopping in for samples and some last minute holiday shopping.
Stockhome will hold Petaluma’s first “Julbord” — a traditional Swedish Christmas smorgasbord — on Saturday, Dec. 15, with seatings at noon, 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. The restaurant will be closed to all regular service to accommodate this buffet-style meal, with communal seating. As is part of the holiday tradition, the meal will include herring, cured salmon, hot dishes and sweets. Thankfully, co-owner Andrea promises there will be no lutfisk. I have had it once, but never again. Instead, the meal will start with house-made glogg (mulled wine) and candied almonds and raisins. Herring will come three ways – mustard, grandma’s classic and saffron and leek, and is served with dill-cooked potatoes, sour cream, chives, red onions, Nordic cheeses, boiled eggs and rye crisps. The cold dishes will included gravlax (dill cured salmon), smoked salmon, sylta (pigs head terrine), rullsylta (shaved pork and lamb belly), pate, chicken liver mousse, pickled veggies, horseradish and Swedish holiday bread. For those looking for some warmth, hot dishes of julskinka (mustard-baked Christmas ham), Swedish meatballs, sausages, ginger-glazed spare ribs and Jansson Temptition will be on the menu, followed by desserts of Santa’s rice porridge and homemade kitchen treats. I am not quite sure how I am going to try everything, but trust me, if there is a way, I will find it. stockhomerestaurant.com